Foreign Divorce Opinion Letters

 

Foreign Divorce Opinion Letters in Ontario

Stanley Family Law has experience in drafting and formalizing opinion letters of a foreign divorce. If this is something that you are in need of then look no further. Divorce opinion letters are required when you have divorced in a jurisdiction other than Canada and you wish to become married in Canada. This is a requirement enforced by the government. The way that the process works is that in order to become married in Canada you must first obtain a marriage license. Marriage licenses are valid for three months once issued. However, in order to obtain a marriage license if you were previously divorced in a jurisdiction other than in Canada you must produce an opinion letter of the foreign divorce. These letters, along with other supporting documentation, are delivered to the appropriate government office for verification prior to a marriage license being issued. The opinion letter must be drafted and signed by a lawyer in good standing with the Law Society of Upper Canada or another regulatory lawyer licensing authority in Canada.

What is included with the application package for the marriage license if you were divorced outside of Canada are the following documents: (1) a completed marriage license application signed by both you and your intended spouse; (2) the original divorce order or a copy of the divorce certified by the administrative officer of the court in the granting jurisdiction, or sealed or otherwise properly authenticated by the court; (3) if the official language of the granting jurisdiction is a language other than English or French then a certified translation of the original divorce order is also required; (4) a copy of a legal opinion letter drafted by a lawyer in good standing as noted above; and (5) a statement of sole responsibility which states that the validity of the foreign divorce remains the responsibility of the licensee and that the government assumes no responsibility if the foreign divorce were to be invalid.

The job of the lawyer in drafting the opinion letter of the foreign divorce is to essentially analyze the licensee's factual circumstances and apply the appropriate legislation and case law so as to determine the validity of the foreign divorce and whether it would be recognized in Canada. These letters require careful consideration and analysis of the relevant statutory provisions contained in the appropriate legislation.

If you would like an opinion letter of a foreign divorce please either email or mail the following documents to our address and indicate on the cover letter the purpose of the said package:

(1) A completed marriage license application signed by both applicants;

(2) A completed statement of sole responsibility for each divorce;

(3) The original divorce or a copy of the divorce certified by the administrative officer of the court in the granting jurisdiction, or sealed or otherwise properly authenticated by the court;

(4) If the divorce documents are from a foreign jurisdiction where the language is other than English or French, a certified translation, from someone other than one of the applicants, must also be included in the package.  Please note that the documents will be returned to the applicants;

(5) If you were not resident in the granting jurisdiction for one year prior to the divorce than a written statement confirming that at least one party to the divorce resided in the granting jurisdiction for at least one year immediately preceding the application for divorce;

(6) Copies of government issued identification (either drivers license or passport); and

(7) A signed retainer agreement .

Once we confirm that our services will be used with the client, the above listed documents will be forwarded to the client. Once we receive the above noted documentation we will return to you the package with instructions as to where the package must be sent via regular mail. The entire package must be sent as indicated in the instructions and you should receive your marriage license shortly thereafter.